Budapest Festival Orchestra, © Marco Borggreve

Beethovenfest in Bonn

A festival of world-class classical music

Bonn celebrates its most famous son for one month each year. The Beethovenfest has long since become a world-renowned festival.

Every year in September Bonn pays homage to its most famous native son with the Beethovenfest. The famous composer’s openness of spirit is also reflected in the festival’s programme, although Beethoven is, of course, the focus of the eponymous event. However, every year the festival’s organisers come up with a new theme that extends well beyond his work and emphasises Beethoven's influence on Romanticism or the musician Franz Liszt, co-founder of the first Beethovenfest Bonn.

The festival, which has since gained a worldwide reputation, has been in existence since 1845. The festival was first celebrated on the occasion of Beethoven's birthday. He would have been 75 years old then had he not died in 1827. The festival has existed in its present form since 1999 and is centred around four weeks in autumn.

In addition to exceptional interpretations of Beethoven’s sonatas, string quartets and symphonies, special attention is placed on supporting contemporary music. Each year, the Beethovenfest commissions and premieres a number of pieces. Overall, the festival features more than 60 concerts at more than 25 venues each year. The stages include venues in the old town and, of course, the Beethovenhaus, the house where the composer was born, as well as castles and churches in the area.

Among the artists appearing regularly are the stars of the modern classical music scene. Many of them work exclusively for the Bonner Publikum programmes, which focus on the season’s theme.


Date 2018:
31 August - 23 September 2018

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Sol Gabetta High Res, © Uwe Arens
Vorstellung im Rahmen des Beethovenfestes in Bonn, © Barbara Frommann
Budapest Festival Orchestra, © Marco Borggreve